Inclusive training program helps small businesses thrive in San Diego

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In 2005, the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) and Bank of America launched Inner City Capital Connections (ICCC) to help close the racial wealth gap by supporting businesses and entrepreneurs in inner cities.  

This one-of-a-kind program providetuition-free executive leadership training to business owners in economically distressed areas. The curriculum focuses on capacity-building education, one-on-one coaching and capital connections to ensure the long-term growth of inner-city businesses across the nation.  

According to the 2019 ICCC Impact Report, the impact of small business owners and entrepreneurs are “far-reaching for local residents” and “key creators of jobs and wealth in their communities.”   

We celebrate the power of entrepreneurs in underserved communities to grow, create high-quality jobs, and build sustainable and inclusive small business ecosystems, says Steve Grossman, CEO, ICIC.

ICCC infographic From 2005-2018,  2,894  ICCC alumni have averaged  120% growth in revenue, created  21,390 jobs, and raised  $2.23 billion in capital—imagine the opportunities created for the individuals hired in these communities! Using strategic partnerships that focus on inclusion—such as ICCC—is a crucial component in helping both job seekers and businesses find success in the workforce and economy.  

This really opened my eyes to further potential of my company,” says a representative from Serenity Event Solutions, San Diego Participant 2019. 

Kaiser Permanente helped bring ICCC to San Diego in 2018 with the belief that increased economic health will translate to better health for the people in economically distressed areas. In the program’s second year, the San Diego Workforce Partnership nominated 12 businesses, eight of which were selected for the programmaking us an honored member of ICCC’s Nominator Hall of Fame. The team also provided highlevel coaching for members of the 2019 cohort. 

The ICCC program stood out to our team because of Kaiser’s belief that economic prosperity for small businesses in low income areas is a key to raising the health of the people in the area,” says Angel Stancer, Workforce Partnership Manager of Business PartnershipsWhen people are successful and have the ability to utilize their earnings to make minor improvements in quality of life, these improvements add up and reduce medical costs in the future. 

The team focused their nominations on businesses that had grown past their start-up stage and reached a point where they may need the additional help to take their business to the next level. 

“It was a great opportunity to nominate and help businesses achieve success,” says Robert Chu, business program specialist at the Workforce Partnership. Not only did we learn more about businesses that we have worked with before, but we were also able to meet new businesses that are in the same stage as the ones we were nominating. This gave us the opportunity to expand our programs to new people.” 

Have an entrepreneur you’d like to nominate for ICCC? Learn more about the criteria here. 

For additional small business resources in San Diego, visit workforce.org/businesses